Canada’s new campaign to retain

Growing Golf
Golf Canada launches Golf is Calling

It’s a question which golf organisations around the world will have been pondering for a while: how does the sport ensure the boom in participation seen in 2020 is maintained in 2021 and beyond?

Golf Canada might have the answer. The governing body has today launched a campaign specifically aimed at retaining the new and returning golfers who boosted playing figures to unprecedented levels during the pandemic.

Led by extensive research into consumer behaviours and market segmentation, Golf Canada’s Golf Industry Advisory Council plans to roll out ‘Golf Is Calling’ in the coming weeks.

“It’s unlike anything Golf Canada has done before,” says the organisation’s Chief Marketing Officer, Vanessa Morbi.

“Nobody is talking about what they’re going to buy after the pandemic; everyone is talking about what they’re going to do. This is critical. As an industry, we trade in the currency of experience. We want to emerge in a new form and present ourselves in a new, fresh way.

“This pandemic has changed the way we live, how we spend our time and what we value. During this unprecedented time of change, we have an opportunity to influence and entrench behaviours that will benefit the sport for the long run.”

Set up in the spring of 2020 before COVID-19 took hold in Canada, the Golf Industry Advisory Council’s initial aim was to grow the game, but its objective soon changed to retaining the thousands of new players who had discovered or rediscovered golf.

Over seven months, it conducted research, studied other sports and industries and identified consumer segments before designing a campaign they believed would resonate with their target audiences.

“The key consumer segments and groups we identified to hone in on were new and young golfers and skewed towards females,” Morbi continues.

“We identified behavioural triggers to inform the creative and messaging, and we also had to be sensitive to the fact the pandemic has had a huge physical and emotional impact and decimated entire industries.

“The foundation has been laid for an industry-wide effort to promote golf participation. We are inviting all our partners from across the country to participate in this campaign with us and capitalize on the incredible opportunity we have at hand.”

To encourage other organisations to support the campaign, Golf Canada has made its campaign assets available to all. They can also be co-branded with other logos and calls to action.

It will be supported by paid media spend, and digital traffic will be directed to Golf Canada’s new website, complete with a course look-up feature which aims to directly link up players with facilities.

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